Friday, June 06, 2008

Rock Around The Clock
The Dates That Changed Rock n' Roll Forever

From the Telegraph:

30 SEPTEMBER, 1946 T-Bone Walker, pioneer of the electric guitar, records Bobby Sox Blues with Jack McVea and His All-Stars for Black & White Records in Hollywood. The song, addressed to a teenager with 'a head full of nothing but stage, screen and radio' presages Chuck Berry's Sweet Little Sixteen, 12 years in the future.

6 NOVEMBER, 1948 Vernon and Gladys Presley and their 13-year-old son, Elvis, move to Memphis from Tupelo, Mississippi.

31 MARCH, 1949 RCA Victor introduces the 7in, 45rpm single to compete with Columbia's 33rpm long-player, launched the previous June.

25 JUNE, 1949 At the urging of its staff writer Jerry Wexler, the trade magazine Billboard changes the name of its 'Race Records' charts to rhythm and blues.

10 DECEMBER, 1949 Fats Domino enters Cosimo Matassa's J&M Studios in New Orleans with bandleader Dave Bartholomew for the first time. They record The Fat Man, the first of his long string of hits for Imperial Records over the 13 years that follow.

JANUARY 1950 Sam Phillips opens the Memphis Recording Service, where his motto is 'We Record Anything-Anywhere-Anytime'. He is soon recording local area bluesmen B.?B. King and Howlin' Wolf and placing their masters with the independent labels RPM in Los Angeles and Chess in Chicago, respectively.

31 DECEMBER, 1952 With his new single I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive climbing the charts, country superstar Hank Williams sets out by car from Knoxville, Tennessee, for Canton, Ohio, to perform at a New Year's Day concert. He dies at the age of 29, probably of acute alcohol poisoning, in the back seat of his Cadillac somewhere en route.

JULY 1953 Elvis Presley, a graduate of Humes High School, visits the Memphis Recording Service, where he makes an acetate recording of two songs, My Happiness and That's When Your Heartaches Begin, ostensibly as a present for his mother.

8 APRIL, 1954 Decca Records signs Bill Haley and His Comets.

12 APRIL, 1954 Atlantic Records releases Shake, Rattle and Roll by Big Joe Turner. Bill Haley and His Comets record Rock Around the Clock with producer Milt Gabler for Decca Records in New York.

10 MAY, 1954 Rock Around the Clock is released as the B-side of Thirteen Women (And Only One Man in Town) by Bill Haley and His Comets.

19 JULY, 1954 Sam Phillips releases Elvis Presley's That's All Right on his Sun Records label. A version of bluegrass pioneer Bill Monroe's Blue Moon of Kentucky is on the flip side.

2 OCTOBER, 1954 Presley, making his debut at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, sings Blue Moon of Kentucky. He is not invited to return.

19 MARCH, 1955 The film Blackboard Jungle, starring Glenn Ford and Sidney Poitier, opens; Rock Around the Clock plays over its opening credits.

Go read the whole thing.